Ben Wilkinson’s youngsters were braced for a typically tough encounter against the Black Cats, with the bulk of both teams made up of our Under-18s sides.
City ground out a hard-fought 2-1 victory in the U18 Premier League back in November, but we were on top from the get-go in the north east.
An early Nico O’Reilly penalty set us on our way before the 10-minute mark, before Luca Barrington doubled our advantage as half-time approached.
Undeterred, the hosts sensed a route back into the game when they were awarded a penalty before the hour.
However, George Murray-Jones came out on top from 12 yards, producing an excellent save to thwart Sunderland and preserve our two-goal advantage.
The Black Cats did eventually manage to get themselves on the scoresheet late on, setting up a nervy finish in the north east.
And there was still time for the hosts to be reduced to ten men, Louie Salkeld given his marching orders for a second yellow card, but City held on to book our place in the final where we’ll face one of Charlton Athletic or Tottenham Hotspur.
City XI: Murray-Jones, Samuel (Lewis 46’), Katongo ( c ), Alleyne, Galvez, Susoho, Barrington, O’Reilly, Ogwuru (Dickson 46’), Whittingham, Smith
Subs: Lewis, McNamara, Adam, Breckin
Sunderland XI: Richardson, Salkeld, Bainbridge, Burke (Cameron 81’), Fieldson, Williams, Moore, Rigg (Middlemas 54’), Gardner (Cotcher 61’), Jones, Watson
Subs: Singh, Cain